Joetta Maue: in transition...

March 4 - 9, 2015

  • The table, his house

    Archival print, 11 x 11 inches, 2014.

    The table, his house
  • Details of found

    Graphite drawing, 22 x 30 inches, 2015.

    Details of found
  • Details of found

    Graphite drawing, 22 x 30 inches, 2015.

    Details of found
  • The basket, her house

    Archival print 11 x 11 inches, 2014.

    The basket, her house

Artist Page

As an artist I have always utilized my daily life as muse; my work inevitably reflects this. After spending years on a body of work, I felt as if I had nowhere left to go. I found myself alone in my studio, in a new city, with a young child, a changing relationship with my parents as they age and I mature, and a vastly different partner as he met a new stage in his life. I turned my eyes away from those relationships that had so long inspired me, toward the objects that surrounded me. The objects were real, solid, reliable, less malleable, less fleeting, tangible markers of this moment in life. The pile of trucks my son left on the floor was less ephemeral then the fact that my son was changing at an unfathomable speed. The dirty blanket on the couch was reliably there while my partner was often on his own journey without me. The beauty of the sunlight on the plants, that I never seemed to have time to water, made me remember why I had plants in the first place. The objects became what located me in my state of transition.

Not only was I transitioning in my subject but my medium as well. I began to be satisfied with just the photograph or the tonal variations in my thread drawings instead of needing overly developed mixed media works. I gave myself permission to strip down, simplify, explore and accept all of this, looking at the objects for grounding and allowing the experimentation of medium to play out. I have arrived at a place that is unfamiliar, totally terrifying and absolutely wonderful.

The photographs are a return to my first way of "seeing." In these diptychs I create a visual relationship between one space that represents someone coming to the end of life while the other is at the beginning. My graphite drawings allow me to zoom in on the importance of these small, possibly insignificant objects, focusing on their texture, tones and detail, abstracting their meaning and role while simultaneously elevating them. Through this work I replicate the process of the darkroom via my technique of drawing with projection & enlargement, mirroring the process of silver halide printing and the use of a grain focuser, the tool which brings a negative to clarity, and using process to develop the tonal variations important to the image. Lastly, the embroidered work is from a series of houseplants, using the houseplant, the object, as a metaphor for a psychological state. At what moments do our plants need to be watered and when do they flourish? What does an overly dirty floor or overflowing sink signify in our life? How do we listen to what these objects are trying to tell us?

All of these works, though finished individually, are the infancy stage of an idea, an artist and a process that is unfinished and in transition…